The Bucs had a chance down the stretch after battling to within four points three times, but they never could get over the hump and finished their season 20-13.
Lexie Barrier scored 27 points to lead JMU, which improved to 22-10 and will play host to Radford in the second round. Radford upset Penn State in overtime on Thursday night.
Senior guard Tianna Tarter, playing in the final game of her illustrious ETSU career, had 15 points and seven rebounds. Freshman guard Erica Haynes-Overton also had 15 points.
The Dukes led by as many as 14 points early in the third quarter, but ETSU held them without a field goal for more than six minutes twice. JMU made up for that by going 23 for 26 at the free throw line.
The Bucs’ deficit was six points after three quarters as JMU led 41-35. ETSU missed its first four shots of the quarter as the Dukes pulled back ahead by 10.
An 8-0 for ETSU, highlighted by Haynes-Overton’s 3-pointer, cut the deficit to 48-44 with 4:33 left. The Bucs were within four two more times.
Alayjah Sherer scored all 10 of her points in the fourth quarter for ETSU.
JMU’s Logan Reynolds, a Wise Central product, finished with five points, six rebounds and a team-high four assists.